Case Study – TBR App


Readers need a way to maintain their TBRs (To Be Read lists) with minimal effort because they want to achieve their goals of reading intentionally.


We believe by creating a TBR tracker app with key motivators and rewards readers will achieve more intentional reading habits.

We will know this to be true when users achieve their goals and rotate through books in their TBR.

Research Goals

Learn the ways in which people plan their TBRs

Understand what motivates users and what frustrates them

Competitive analysis



Interviewees aren’t reading as much as they want to be

Interviewees don’t want to make reading a chore

Interviewees are motivated by a book’s summary, cover art, genre, author or recommendations

Interviewees generally keep track of their reading goals mentally, sporadically with written lists, or via a cataloging system like GoodReads


Accountable Anne needs a way to… be meaningfully reminded of why she has added a particular book to her TBR… because she wants to get through the TBR books outside of her comfort zone

Easy Going Esther needs a way to… quickly be inspired to pick up a TBR book… because she wants to spend more time reading and less time planning to read

Balance Beam Ben needs a way to… manage the older books on his TBR in a fun way… because his lengthy TBR can become overwhelming

Feature Prioritization


Currently Reading List

Future Reading List

Ability to add a new book

High level notification features

Ability to add a goal


Connect with / import TBR from existing locations

More variations upon notifications

Progress round-up email


Preset reading challenges

Provide book recommendations

Track additional metrics

User Flow

Happy Path highlighted in green

Paper Prototype

Sample paper prototypes for Happy Path


Sample wireframes for Happy Path (Figma)

Usability Testing

Issue: Participant unsure of the TBR acronym in navigation bar

Issue: Participant unsure if the submission was confirmed after adding a book

Issue: Participant was surprised by being taken back to the search portion of the “Add a Book” page after the task scenario

Solution: Replace “Add to TBR” with “Add a Book”

Solution: Add a confirmation page with a link to see the book in your “Future Reads”

Solution: Add a confirmation page with a link to see the book in your “Future Reads” and a link to add another book


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